VICTORIA, B.C. — The British Columbia government has announced two new pre-approved routes for shipments of up to 85-tons gross vehicle weight (GVW) along the Highway 17/South Fraser Perimeter Road (SFPR) and on Highway 16 from Terrace to Kitwanga.
According to the British Columbia Trucking Association (BCTA) in late November the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure announced this allowance for trucks to transport heavy, high-value cargo, such as oversized construction materials used in the oil and gas industry.
Creating a pre-approved heavy-haul route along the SFPR connects Fraser Surrey Docks to the 85-tonne network, while the section along Highway 16 closes a gap in that 85-tonne route and provides trucks hauling oversized loads with a continuous route from Alberta through to Kitimat, according to BCTA.
In an interview with the Vancouver Sun, BCTA President & CEO Louise Yako explained that association has been urging the ministry to establish more heavy-haul routes to facilitate the movement of large machinery from BC ports to projects in northern BC and Alberta.
“A lot of it tends to be equipment that is required for the larger resource extraction projects and for BC Hydro’s Site C,” she said.
The extended 85-tonne network should significantly reduce the waiting time for permits, according to BCTA.
“It illustrates the province’s support for commerce in BC and for ensuring that all of the large resource-related projects go forward and don’t end up having to deal with minor glitches like permit delays. It just moves us all in the right direction,” said Yako.
The government is also considering both of these routes for further upgrades to allow for 125-ton loads. Highway 17 is part of a proposed 125-ton route from Fraser Surrey Docks to Highway 1.